CARSON CITY – The Nevada DMV, Nevada Division of Insurance and the Nevada Insurance Council are reminding motorists that minimum liability insurance coverage for vehicles will go up on July 1.
Currently, motorists must carry insurance coverage of “15/30/10” or $15,000 for bodily injury per person, $30,000 for all persons for bodily injury per crash and $10,000 for property damage per crash.
The new minimums, established by Senate Bill 308 in the 2017 Nevada Legislature, are “25/50/20” or $25,000 for bodily injury per person, $50,000 for all persons for bodily injury per crash and $20,000 for property damage per crash.
“The costs of medical care and automobile repairs have gone up significantly. The cost of a crash can easily exceed these older minimums,” said DMV Director Terri Albertson.
The current minimum coverage in Nevada is the second lowest in the United States. Higher minimums are in effect in 43 other states, according to legislative testimony on Senate Bill 308.
Many motorists have already been notified of the higher coverage during their most recent policy renewal. Consumers are also encouraged to check in with their insurance agent or company to determine how this new law will affect their policy personally.
Legislative testimony indicated about 32% of Nevada motorists carry the current minimum coverage. The higher limits could impact up to 650,000 drivers and 736,000 vehicles. There are approximately two million licensed drivers in Nevada and 2.3 million registered vehicles that require insurance.
Drivers who carry the current minimum coverage will see a premium increase with the higher limits. It is difficult to predict the amount of any increase as insurance premiums are based on many factors other than the coverage limits.
While the higher premiums may be an additional expense for low-income drivers, the higher limits will help protect these same drivers in the event of a crash. Costs in a crash can easily exceed the 15/30/10 limits. The driver can be held personally responsible for the difference.
One option to help lower premiums is Usage Based Insurance (UBI). UBI can save money for those who use public transportation or ride-sharing or who simply don’t drive much. The National Association of Insurance Commissioners has launched a new tool called DriveCheck to help consumers determine if UBI may fit their driving habits. DriveCheck takes you through a few quick questions about driving habits while providing more information about how UBI works. At the end, you will receive an assessment of the likelihood that you will benefit from UBI.
The Nevada Division of Insurance has posted Information and Frequently Asked Questions on its website, doi.nv.gov.